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Fla. sheriff charges dead 12-year-old’s alleged bullies

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POLK COUNTY, Fla. (CBS News) -- Two Florida girls who police said were primarily responsible for bullying a 12-year-old girl who killed herself are facing criminal charges.

Police arrested the girls Tuesday after comments on Facebook lead them to the suspects, but also said as 15 girls may have been involved in the bullying.

Rebecca Sedwick, who would have celebrated her 13th birthday on Saturday, jumped to her death from a tower at an abandoned concrete factory last month.

Now two of her classmates, a 14 and a 12-year-old, face charges for what they allegedly did before Sedwick took her own life.

Police charged the two girls with felony aggravated stalking after investigators said they found a message on one of the suspects Facebook page over the weekend.

“Yes, I bullied Rebecca and she killed herself. But I don't give a *****."

As a result, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said he had to take action.

"We decided we can't leave her out there,” said Judd. “Who else is she going to torment? Who else is she going to harass? "

The 14-year-old suspect denies writing the post and said someone hacked her Facebook page.

Sedwick's mother said she believes the girls harassed Rebecca at school, until she couldn't take it anymore.

"It makes me question where they learned it from,” said Norman. “I mean you gotta, kids learn it from somewhere."

John Borgen said he dated Rebecca and one of the suspects.  Police say that is likely what prompted the bullying.

"They need to take life seriously and they need to stop bullying,” said Borgen. “Why you got to bully somebody?"


  • Glen Allen

    “John Borgen said he dated Rebecca …”Dated her? The victim’s mother better start looking at her own parenting skills, what on earth is a 12 year old doing “dating”?

    • David

      Don’t try to turn this around on the Mother what those kids did wasn’t right and they get what they deserve!

      • David

        I Fully agree they deserve a fair trial! However I don’t believe that it’s the “dating” nor was it bad parenting, There has being a rise in bullying and nothing is getting done! I believe this is the youngest suicide I have ever seen! I could be wrong!

  • Michelle

    At 12 yo “dated” means you hang out at school together, hold hands etc.
    bullying is on the rise and schools are not doing anything to stop this. A slap on the wrist or telling them to stop will not help.

  • Dee81

    Kids are dumb as hell. The sh** that goes through their mind that makes them do or say the things they do. You just gotta ask, are you that stupid or what?

  • Glen Allen

    This is a sad situation all of the way around, I guess we look to blame any, and everything we can when a child does something we do not understand like this, maybe because we all feel guilty believing there was something we could have done. I don’t believe anyone thought the child would take her own life.

  • Misty Dooley

    I think both girls and ANY girls found involved in it should spend time in juvenile detention and be forced to do community service as well for the next six months to a year PLUS counseling!!! In fact, there should be some kind of community service attached to these girls until they are 30 at the very least!!! What they did to that girl was for a lifetime….for her mother now there will be No graduation, No wedding, No grandchildren, No more hugs and kisses from her little girl for a lifetime!!! That mother has lost her child b/c these girls who think they are all that didnt LIKE her??? There is NO excuse for bullying anyone at any time….NONE!!!

  • Ruthina Ackies

    well… there is NOT a rise in bullying.. its been there the whole time. And some of you posting may have bullied someone in the past. i dont know. But I do know this… news travels faster these days. The internet and getting news from around the world has changed and we are made more aware of what is going on. People bullied others for many years and its time that it stops. I have noticed that the kids i went to school with are pretty much the same, The ones that were nice..are still nice. The ones that have a chip on the shoulder, still pretty much have a chip on their shoulder. A few found God and a few lost God. But by and large… how you treat people by the time you are in 5th pretty much what the same way they treat people now and we are all in our 50s. A childs personality is pretty much embedded in them by the time they are 6 yrs old. Seriously. So as a 6 yr old. If you are around people who fight and cuss and fuss, it will make an impression. If you are around people who work hard and clean, that will leave an impression. If you are around people who expect good grades and expect going off to college, then that leaves an impression. and if you are around people who bully you…you either take it and resent it and do foolish things, or you resent it and it festers or you dont take it. We need more and more people to raise their children with respect and respecting others. it starts at home. And the schools play a hugh role in this as well. The middle school teachers in every middle my four children have attended have been some of the worse offenders of bullying. They are the ones that have the power to get children to hate school. so its not just the kids. the kids learn this from adults. So teachers in the school… stop being sarastic and mumbling mean things and store LABELING kids in school.
    Im off my soapbox. the children that are 12 yrs old, they are too young and yet old enough at the same time. We need to look into this case further and before condemning such young children… the word being child is important, lets not throw them away. Lets reform them with strong lessons. Maybe they need more exposure to different kids of people and different classes of people and find the good in each of them. its a lesson everyone needs.
    As for the family that lost their daughter. I am so so so very sorry. My daugher committed suicide at 19 yrs old. 19 yrs old.. so young. Alot of it had to do with society and people in our community judging her for being ‘different’. she suffered from being bi polar… or the medication I dont know.. Its a horrific thing to experience and not normal at all. We write their birthdate on everything. Holding their gravestone or memorial bronze with their date of their passing is too much to bare.
    If i can somehow create more awareness, I am happy to save someone’s else child and someone elses family from loses a child. But remember that God has the perfect timing of taking someone home. So it maybe, the lesson for us on earth was sent to us thru Rebecca to stop the bullying and she simply went home to her Father in Heaven. its just so hard for us on earth to understand as we want them with us now.
    Peace be to all. Ruth Ackies

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